Archive for August, 2011

Reunited with one of my favorite shows

August 31st, 2011 8 comments

I’ve been an avid viewer of What Not to Wear on TLC since season 1. Yup, I even remember long-haired Wayne of season 1. I love the show, and I’ve learned so much watching it — both about style and about self confidence. More on that later…

When I say I’ve been an avid viewer, I should clarify: I WAS an avid viewer. Until TLC moved it from Friday night to Tuesday night. Now, I only see it if I just happen to stumble upon it as a repeat later in the week. (Read: never.)

Friday nights were a tradition with my Mom! We’d watch together sitting on the couch, then after I moved to Nashville we’d watch together via AIM. The mother/daughter time was a wonderful bonus to one of my favorite shows!

Then… then it moved to Tuesday night. The one night a week I can’t watch. Mom and I find other shows to watch together, but none of them are our original What Not to Wear. None stand up to the high bar we’d set with that show.

Last night, however, I was actually free and I got to tune in for two episodes back-to-back. Mom and I chatted online through the show, discussing the style, attitude and the ending reveal of each participant. I was reminded how much FUN it is, and I was also reminded why I love the show so much.

It’s not just about fashion. Anyone who thinks that has never watched an episode, never REALLY watched it. Most style issues for the participants are a result of a deeper seeded issue that has led to a lack of self confidence. Often its a case of worrying so much about everyone else that the participant forgets to take care of themselves. Granted, sometimes its a case of just not knowing any better. Whatever the reason, though, you most often see not only a change in appearance, but a change in attitude and confidence.

The show makes me want to take more care in my appearance. The show reminds me how I present myself not only can change how people interact with me, but also how I think of myself. It reminds me that when I take extra care in my day’s appearance, I often have a more productive and better day.

I wish TLC would move it back to Friday, but since that won’t be happening, I’ll just have to wait until I get another Tuesday free. I look forward to the time with Mom, and I look forward to that kick in butt to step up and take better care of myself.

Writing talents I don’t possess

August 30th, 2011 4 comments
293: Writer's Night

Songwriters Matt Willis and Rick Tiger

Yesterday, I went to a writer’s night to see a couple friends perform their songs. I’ve attended other writer’s nights, but last night… last night was just something special for me.

I sat down, and I listened. Really listened. Oh okay, I snapped a few photos, but I was there to be a spectator, not a photographer. My husband commented that I had a smile on my face the whole time.

For me, it was not just about the music, it was about watching these people living their dreams. Writing their songs and performing for people who want to hear them. I was so proud of my friends. So happy for them!

And… I was in awe.

See, when someone asks me what I do, I used to respond, “I’m a writer!”

I don’t do that any more. Not that I’m not a writer (blogger), but when you say “writer” in Nashville, people think you are a songwriter. And, hey, its an easy and logical assessment! Music city. Writer. Music. Songs. Songwriter. Makes sense.

But, alas, no. I am no songwriter. In fact, I am in awe of songwriters. I admire their abilities to convey such emotion through their words. I admire their ability to tell a whole story in a few verses and a chorus. I admire their ability to take a throw away hook and turn it into a work of art.

I write, but I can’t craft a song. I don’t even do (serious) poetry. I might write the random limerick or haiku for humor-sake. Perhaps a cute little rhyme here and there. But past that? I leave the song writing to the professionals. I admire their talents. I respect them. And I sincerely wish them all the success in the world doing it.

The real wives of musicians (and road guys in general)

August 29th, 2011 2 comments

I have never watched any of the “Real Housewives of…” shows. Never cared to… too far out of reality for me. I’ve never watched any show that follows people around and documents their “real life.” (Okay, fine, maybe I have watched a few episodes of Gene Simmons Family Jewels. And I might have endured one or two episodes of Newlyweds — remember that one?)

When I stumbled upon the Road Widows blog and started contributing, I briefly wondered why CMT doesn’t do a “Real Road Widows of Music City” or something. That could be really cool, I thought. Heck, I’d be happy to contribute to it!

I’ve chewed on this idea a few times. How would that work? I guess you’d probably focus on the wives of the artists for the biggest ratings, but what about us wives of the side guys?  I know some great women that could be featured. It could be pretty cool.

Then, as I lay in bed one night, trying to turn the brain off so I could sleep (husband snoring softly beside me… dammit, I thought, I want to sleep, too!) it hit me. It would probably be one a boring show in comparison to its reality tv peers.

See, us road widows… we aren’t generally an outlandish bunch. Many of us have regular ol’ day jobs. Others of us are your typical stay at home moms (albeit part time single-parents.) We are all more focused on putting food on the table than shopping for designer dresses and shoes. We live a life a lot closer to reality than those typical “reality” TV shows portray. It is within that that it really wouldn’t be exciting. It might pass more as educational. Recipes for one. Budgeting. How to fly solo to events. Building your own support system outside of your marriage. Balancing the craziness of “the life” with “the normal world.”

Oh sure, there would be your cool out-of-the ordinary moments. The occasional awards show. CD release parties. A glimpse at hanging backstage before a concert. (Newsflash: Soundcheck is usually pretty boring, and you do a whole lot of hurry up and waiting. Though my personal favorite drama tends to deal with security guards on a power trip.) You could spice it all up here and there!

But, quite frankly, we’re a pretty normal bunch living pretty normal lives… and quite frankly, I am VERY thankful for that.

Weekly Winners (August 21 – 27)

August 28th, 2011 22 comments

Weekly WinnersWeekly Winners is a fun little thing bloggers do to showcase some of their favorite photos from the previous week. It is brought to you, me and everyone by the lovely Lotus, aka Sarcastic Mom. Visit her site and find all the participants. See some amazing photos brought to you by bloggers around the world. Leave a little love when you do — its like food for the soul!

Photos taken using my Droid Incredible or a Sony DSLR A230.
View all of my photos on my Flickr stream.


I had a pretty random week this week, and I found myself having to seek out photos some days. I ended up much happier than I expected to be as sat down to pick my Weekly Winners! I had a hard time picking which ones to feature!!

286: Blue Moon in the evening

Blue Moon in the evening



Looking back on Broadway

Looking back on Broadway

288: Abandoned


Leaf down

Leaf down

289: Serious business

Serious business

290: Stepping into the Opry House

Stepping into the Opry House

Grand Ole Opry drink

Joe Diffie

A special moment


Thanks for viewing! Now go visit Lotus and find all the WW participants.
Leave a little love when you do — its like food for the soul!

Ten years OFFICIALLY an Aggie

August 27th, 2011 4 comments

Ten years ago today, I had my first class at Texas A&M University.

If anyone is doing the math, yes I went to “junior college” for two years, then spent the last two years of college at TAMU.  I was an Aggie from the day I was born, so this was just an “official” step in Aggie status.

I thought for giggles, I’d share my entry from my private journal written that day:

11:13 pm August 27th, 2001

 She traveled this road as a child…

I’ve had that song in my head all day.

Well, that one and ‘Drops of Jupiter’ but that one only because it seems to be on every station I put the radio on.

Anyway, after the worst weekend of the past year… Ugh… being sick really, really sucks. I mean, I’m kinda hungry right now, but after being as sick as I was, I’m actually afraid to eat. *shakes head* I have some Pringles here, maybe I’ll eat on those.

I’m worn out. I am still not at 100% strength yet, so today was a little less spectacular than I like. Yes, my first day at TAMU.

My first class wasn’t until after 4 PM, so I didn’t leave home until after 2:00. Mom and Dad followed me, because I still hadn’t moved any of my clothes down here. So they brought my clothes while I went to class. Its an hour drive and I had to move to get to class on time. It poured on us on the way… I mean, you could barely see the car in front of you. So… yeah… I went to my first class in the rain.

I parked further away than I wanted too, but I had no choice. I got to class and… zoned out. LOL!! I mean, it should be a good class but she was basically reading the syllabus to us! My class today was Sociology of Religion. It’ll be interesting, and I don’t think it’ll be all THAT tough. We’ll see…

When I got out of class I called my friend, Lindsey. She lives on campus, so she came and got me and we went to her dorm room. We hung out with her room mate and other girls from that dorm in her room. Lindsey had a class so she went to class and I stayed behind with the other girls. That was pretty cool. They all had plans and slowly trickled, though, and eventually it was just me and the remote control. LOL!!! Lindsey got back, though, and we headed out with this girl from across the hall for Kyle Field… the football field. There was supposed to be an “All U-Nite” where they introduce the sports teams, band, corp of cadets, yell leaders, etc. Well, because of the rain it was canceled. So, we went back to the dorm. Lindsey and I were hungry so we went out to eat. LONG walk to my truck. *groan* *laugh*

it was nice, though. After we ate, I dropped her at her dorm and I came back here to my aunts house.

I have a really nice room here. I like it. Its big. When I get my X-Files poster, my three-eyed smiley poster, and a MB20 poster up on the walls I’ll take some pictures.

Right now? I’m headed for bed. I am really, really tired. I have an 8 am class, and the road I take to school will be going under construction in the morning, so… I gotta leave extra early. I’m going to go to bed, pop in one of my X-Files tapes… Bad Blood, I think… and zone out.

I laugh as I read that now. It traditionally rains on the first day of classes. I’m pretty sure it did every semester I was there. And Sociology of Religion is to this day one of my least favorite classes… mostly because it was more reading that I ever could handle and I skated through with a C.

I love that I have journal entries to look back on for my years at TAMU. I wish I still kept it up today like I did then. It’s fun to be able to see how much I’ve changed (and how much I’ve stayed the same!) through the years.

Amazing and amusing.

Friday drinks

August 26th, 2011 2 comments

You may or may not know, I bartend on the side. I’m a back-up bartender at my favorite bar here in Nashville, and boy some of the stories I could tell from behind the bar!

For Friday, though, I thought I’d bring you three drink recipes to possibly use in any weekend “partying” you may do this weekend.

The first is a shot that you can also have as a drink. (Just make more and serve over ice.) It’s something of a go-to for me when I don’t know what else to have or when someone comes to me and says, “What do you suggest?”

Washington Apple

1/3 Crown Royal
1/3 Apple Pucker
1/3 Cranberry Juice

Pour all four into a shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a shooter glass.

Or, as I said, make it into a drink by shaking and straining over ice.

Baby Guiness

Baby Guinness

My next drink choice is definitely my favorite shot at this time. A friends introduced me to it, and I haven’t looked back since. If you like coffee, trust me on this one and try it. (There are various variations on this shot, but this one is by far my favorite.)

Baby Guinness

2/3 Patron Cafe
1/3 Baileys

Pour the Patron Cafe into a shot glass, then float the Baileys on top. It’ll look like a tiny glass of Guinness!

My final drink comes with a story. Every so often you’ll get “those” customers… the ones you feel you’re never going to make happy.

My night with a couple ladies started with margaritas. We only serve them over the rocks (which, by the way, we don’t use a mix… they’re made from scratch and are, IMO, 1000x better than any margarita mix or any frozen margarita out of a machine!) and that wasn’t what they really wanted. So their next order was Sex on the Beach. No problem. I made them the drinks only to have them later come back and ask for grenadine. I arched an eyebrow. Later they ordered a Malibu Sunrise and made a big show of, “Oh THIS time to you remembered the grenadine.”

There is no grenadine in Sex on the Beach…

Sex on the Beach

1 1/2 oz vodka
1/2 oz peach schnapps
2 oz cranberry juice
2 oz orange juice

 Add vodka and peach schnapps to a highball glass over ice. Fill with equal measures of cranberry juice and orange juice, and stir.(I admit, I usually shake and strain over ice myself.)

I repeat. There is NO GRENADINE in Sex on the Beach. And if anyone reading this asks a bartender for Sex on the Beach and ask for grenadine and gets a weird look… you can’t say I didn’t tell ya…

Happy Friday, ya’ll!!

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